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tv   Politics Nation  MSNBC  September 28, 2012 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT

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seem to work. it turns out, the sale of presidential halloween masks are actually a great way to know who's going to win. in fact, in the past four elections, halloween masks have determined by their sales they accurately predicted the winner. and guess who is selling more this year? that's right. president obama masks are out selling mitt romney's masks by nearly 40%. congratulations, mr. president. when you think about it, mitt romney's been hiding behind a mask this entire election. a mask he only takes off in quiet rooms, behind closed doors, when he's talking to wealthy donors. but voters don't seem to like it much. and a new fox news poll, yes, fox news poll, shows romney trailing nationally by five points. and get this, he has a lower
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favorable rating than george w. bush. don't adjust your tv set. mr. romney is less liked than bush. huh? maybe that's something to do with the fact that he can't seem to answer basic questions. >> how was that? >> i have nothing. >> guys, here we go. >> guys -- it's just -- all we've got here is beef jerky? who here wants a piece of beef jerky? that's all i've got. this was given to us by jack link. >> what do you have planned for the weekend? >> anyone else? >> governor romney, they were asking about the debates, about the israeli prime minister, not
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about beef jerky. now, romney did answer questions from reporters later. but this is what he's done issue after issue, dodge questions and hide behind the mask. but i've got news for mr. romney. the obama campaign is hammering home who the real romney is and what he stands for. he's a candidate who has no problem writing off the country, something that this president refuses to do. >> i'm not fighting to create democrat or republican jobs, i'm creating jobs. i'm fighting to improve schools in the united states of america. i'm not fighting on behalf of rich values or poor values or 53% value. i'm fighting for american values. he's fighting for american values. but the other candidate, the man
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behind the mask, he's offering us a budget that takes care of the rich but leaves everyone else in the dust. >> show me your budget. i'll tell you what you've got. let's take a look at their budget. why are they doing it? well, they are doing it because they have to. and here's the reason they have to. they cannot possibly, possibly continue to add to the tax cuts of the super wealthy. >> that's what is behind the romney mask. that's what the next 39 days to the election are all about. and a special thank you to our fake president and mitt romney for helping us to predict this election. joining me now unmasked is
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krystal ball, co-host of "the nik kell" on msnbc and dana milbank. thank you both for being here this evening. >> thank, reverend. >> krystal, let me start with you. romney is falling behind not because he's a bad candidate. are voters rejecting his ideas as well? >> absolutely. as much as he's tried to hide behind the mask, democrats have been happy to fill in exactly what he stands for and what he's been saying in this election and i think he really sealed his fate. the 47% video was the nail in the coffin. really, he sealed his fate long ago when he was supporting things like personhood, an extreme piece of legislation that it was actually -- it actually failed in mississippi, the most pro life state in the country, focusing on things like self deportation, supporting the paul ryan budget, calling it marvelous, voucher rising medicare. these are wildly unpopular
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policies that he has stood for and he may not be willing but the democrats are happy to fill in those detail and it's his ideas at the core. >> aside from the politics and the polls -- and we'll go through some of those numbers, i think that when americans hear the choices of the perspective and world view, the big picture view of each candidate, they begin making basic decisions. the reason that 47% tape i think was so powerful against romney is it gave a world view of how he sees the country. >> right. >> and i think that's why we started seeing a whole shift in these polls. >> yeah, i think that's right, reverend. the mask thing by itself is not just positive because we have to remember that there were more george w. bush masks sold in 2000 and al gore actually won that election.
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so i'm not sure that we can be entirely sure there but it is one kernel there and that's where people are actually focused the most because they are seeing the ads, they are seeing the candidates and hearing the messages. i suspect what is going on there is they are hearing mitt romney's message and he is not as attractive as he would have always been if they had some theoretical republican candidate out there. the contrast where it's being drawn the most firmly is working to obama's favor. >> and i rarely get to correct dana milbank, but i would beg to argue that you forgot the hanging masks of 2008. >> i was counting the ralph
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nadar masks. >> krystal, let me come back to you. let's look at the poll number. president obama leads romney in swing state polls of nbc news polls show him up seven points in new hampshire, even though mr. romney has a home in new hampshire. he's up two points in nevada and north carolina. this comes up on top of other polls, like he's up ten points in ohio. foints. no republican has won without idaho. ohio. these are very solid numbers even though no matter how you try and do the margin of error, he is up. >> the president is up in basically every swing state that you can look out, including ones like north carolina where he won very narrowly. if you look at ohio and
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pennsylvania, the lead is particularly dramatic and that is driven by the fact that mitt romney is such a poor candidate because he sent job overseas, he worked at bain capital directly impacted people there. and also another thing i wop point to in ohio in particular, he was forced to come out and support the anti-union sb-5 ballot initiative during the primary campaign and that left a negative taste in voters' mouths in ohio as well. >> and sp-5 was defeated? >> that's right. soundly. >> dana, the fact that these poll numbers are going against mr. romney, you wouldn't -- you couldn't tell by talking to governor romney after campaigning the last two days. take a listen. >> it is an honor to be here with you and to be here with
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these cadets and to be at this extraordinary place that so many presidents past have visited and a president future is visiting today. >> and when i become president of the united states -- i'm going to win pennsylvania and become the next president of the united states. >> all candidates say that but isn't that naive when you're 12 points behind in pennsylvania to be saying that? >> yeah. he's not going to win pennsylvania any more than he is going to win california or new york. of course he says that sort of thing. i was at his event in virginia and he said, if i become president -- and then he said, when i become president. you've got to look at these blind quotes, unnamed quotes coming from people on his campaign staff and they are really murderous things that they are say. he'd be a great commander in chief. he's just a lousy candidate. you already see his own people getting their disstrans from him. i think that's more indicative than any other individual poll.
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>> let me show you something very interesting, krystal. i'm going to give you an example of how his message is really not resonating. look at this graphic about the most watched youtube videos. president obama's dnc speech, 4.9 million people went to. clinton's dnc speech, 3.95 million went to. romney's 47% video, the lead video, 47%, 3.4 million people went to it cht clint eastwood's speech with the empty chair, 3.2 million. michelle obama's dnc speech, 3.2 million. romney's rnc speech, 1.1 million. >> that's pretty unbelievable chart right there. when you're losing to clint eastwood's empty chair speech by 2.1 million people, that's unreal. >> when you do a video of you
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talking about 47% by 2.3 million. >> that's unreal. and i think you hit on something very key here, which is when people watch that 47% video, they've been trying to get a sense, who is this man really? he's been all over the board. he was the moderate governor of massachusetts. now he's spouting these tea party talking points. who is he really? and when they saw that video, they said, ah, this is who is he at his core and we don't like it. >> well, krystal ball and dana milbank, thank you for your time and have a good weekend. be sure to check out krystal right here on "the cycle" here at 3:00 p.m. eastern. the real voter in america is coming from the americans. a gop operative is being investigated for hundreds of cases of potential fraud, including registering dead people to vote as republicans.
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plus, weak tea. the tea party is down and out. does this mean the right will finally actually try to get something done? and mitt romney's campaign is off course and sinking fast. and republicans are starting to jump ship. you're watching "politicsnation" on msnbc. >> republican insiders say that the romney campaign should not hamper paul ryan and let ryan be ryan. no, i think if republican insiders had their way, they might let ryan beat romney. if we want to improve our schools... ...what should we invest in? maybe new buildings? what about updated equipment?
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the "politicsnation" conversation is going all day long. today's hot topic was the right wing voter fraud coming out of florida. tammi says, they accuse the democrats of shenanigans when they are the ones up to no good. and dana says, nice try republicans, but we gotcha. nice one, dana. we've got the full report on that fraud, by the way, coming up next. but, first, we want to hear what you think. head over to facebook and search "politicsnation" and "like" us to join the conversation that keeps going long after the show ends. my doctor told me calcium is efficiently absorbed in small continuous amounts. citracal slow release continuously releases calcium plus d with efficient absorption in one daily dose.
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tonight i'd like to introduce you to the hms romney. that's right, the hms romney was actually a real ship. sent to the british harbor in 1768 to make sure the colonists sent enough in taxes. sure to make sure that people paid enough in taxes. ironic, isn't it? almost 250 years later there's a new romney on the high satiseas. this one, is of course, taking on water and they are not quite sure what the captain is up to or even why he's the captain. here's what ultra rich republican bill marriott of the marriott hotel chain said last night about why his good friend
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mitt should guide our ship of state. >> both men have vacation homes and a few summers ago i was taking my grandchildren and children to town in the boat for ice cream and we got into the dock and they were all full and we looked around and there was no place to park. i finally found a place to park after 20 minutes and i said, who is going to grab the rope and i looked up and there was mitt romney. he pulled me in, tied the boat and he rescued me just as he is going to rescue this great country. >> mitt romney helped a rich buddy park his late yacht and that's why he should be president? this campaign has lost touch with reality and it's no wonder republicans are jumping ship. they are blaming romney himself for the flailing campaign and saying, in the end, it's mitt.
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look out below, republicans are jumping ship faster than you can say hms romney. joining me now is erin mcpike, national political reporter for "real clear politics" and jonathan, writer for "the washington post" and msnbc contributor. thank you both for being here tonight. >> thank you. >> jonathan, if romney doesn't make a change, are we going to see more and more republicans jumping ship, in your opinion? >> sure. we've been listening to and watching republicans express concern about mitt romney since he became -- since before he became the nominee. he wasn't conservative enough. his ideas weren't conservative enough. once he got the nomination, those concerns started becoming louder and louder and ever since charlotte, since conventions were done and since president obama shot out of charlotte with the convention bounds, the
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alarms have been ringing louder and louder by conservatives. peggy noonan, rich lowry, bill crystal, all of these folks expressing extreme concern about this candidate and where he's taking the party and where he's taking the conservative movement. so i think if things keep going the way they are going, i think you can hit that fog horn button a few more times and a few more splashes will happen. >> now, erin, we're also hearing leading republicans and saying things political reported that republicans are losing faith in romney's ability to win. one high ranking romney campaign said, a lousy candidate and republicans repeatedly call romney too rich to care. one romney donor even tells politico he's missing the normal guy gene. i mean, these are republicans
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and people in his campaign, erin. >> sure. but as jonathan noted, people have been making this criticism of romney all year, going back to the new hampshire primary when he said, i like to fire people. this is something that has gotten increasingly worse for mitt romney because he wasn't been able to change how he is. that is always going to be a problem for him. absolutely. >> well, it's going to be a continuing problem because jonathan, charlie cook wrote today in the national journal that unless mitt romney does something to change his campaign, gop donors may abandon him like they did bob dole in 1996. romney faces the very real prospect that republican donors super pacs and other parts of the gop support structure will towards helping him and towards
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a last-ditch senate majority and a senate house majority. >> the problem that mitt romney has, he now has less than 40 days to turn this thing around. this is a man who has been running for president for six years and now it boils down to 40 days, three debates, one more if you include the vice presidential debate to try to convince the american people who are now really paying attention that he is the person to replace president obama in office. and it just doesn't seem like that it's working. again, we've got 40 day. less than 40 day. so anything can happen. after all, this is politics. but it seem highly unlikely. >> now, erin, but at the same time, isn't it a little kind of cynical for some of the republicans to act like it's
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just romney and not the ideas and the policies of the republicans? because i'm starting to see a strategy here of sacrifice romney but it's not our ideas, it's not our policies, it's just that he's a bad candidate. is it in many ways reflected -- is it not in many ways reflected by the polls that is both of the ideas are being rejected by a lot of americans? >> well, if you talk to strategists who are running some of the republican campaigns for senate, let's say, what they are saying is they want to find a way to run ahead of mitt romney because they do think the campaign has not been run very well and he's not going to provide them with good co coattails. they are making their own arguments and it's possible what you are saying is true, certainly, but we'll have to see how the senate candidates are doing. that tells you something is wrong with the candidate, and
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not necessarily the republican party although it's clear that they have shifted far to the right and that will affect the turnout in the swing states that have very diverse demographic groups. >> jonathan, when we look at the pollings on tax cuts for the rich and who is doing better with the economy and all sorts of social issues that they've raised, these on issues, independent candidates, they are losing on the issues. they are losing on the big picture policy items. >> right. look, you're talking about a republican party, as erin said, that has swung so far to the right that, you know, even if mitt romney tried to pivot to the middle, he would still be far and to the right. these are ideas that are radical, even, and the american people have shown time and time again that this is not what they want. paul ryan got booed at the aarp because of what he's proposed for appealing obama care and his own budget, i think, if they
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knew all of the things in it they would continue to boo. as someone said on the previous show, the personhood amendment, or maybe it was krystal, it went down in mississippi, probably the most conservative state in the union. this is a conservative idea that's been pushed and rejected. >> that's why it's just beyond the individual candidate, though they are going to try to just dump it all on romney, i think. thank you both. i have to leave it there. but before we go, if you just want to happen to know what happened to the first hms romney, the ship ran aground in 1804 after losing its way in some thick fog. i wonder if this romney will suffer a similar fate. >> thank you both for your time. have a great weekend. >> thank you, you, too. >> it turns out there is voter fraud in america. what is being done by republicans. new investigations against the gop operative working in four
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states, including florida. but, first, we have the 411 on the right wing's bogus complaint about obama phones. stay with us. >> people are clamoring for more taxes from the romney campaign. today the romney campaign had this to say. >> good news, america. mitt romney recognizes that they want additional information. today he's releasing his last ten years of taxadermy. jack, you're a little boring.
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i know it's crazy. we've got their number so let's call them on it. oh, hello. i didn't notice you were there. i was talking with a friend about the latest phony attack on the president. some republicans are saying he's giving away free cell phones to get votes. the drudge report posted this headline saying a woman got a free phone from the president. rush limbaugh quickly picked up the line. >> voting for obama's not about hard work. go talk to the cell phone lady. voting for obama's not about hard work. it's about just the opposite. >> the right wings all dialed in on their latest 47% talking
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point. too bad the fact ts can't get through. there is a national program to help low-income people get subsidized phone services. but they aren't obama phone. the idea of getting universal phone service dates back to the 1930s, decades before the obama was born. the current program that helps people get phones started under president reagan. when did it begin including cell phones? in 2008. that's right. under president bush. so a policy dating back to the great depression, formalized by president reagan and expanded by president bush is somehow president obama's fault? did the right wing think i wouldn't give viewers the 411 on this? nice try. but we've got you. since ameriprise financial was founded back in 1894, they've been committed to putting clients first.
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the election is on. voters in 30 states are already choosing their next president. these are voters today in iowa. republicans have been pushing the idea that there's a huge problem with voter fraud in this country. there's not. but now we're getting troubling reports of voter fraud committed by republicans. joining me to help explain those allegations is michael isakoff, nbc news national investigative correspondent. thanks for being here, michael. >> good to be with you. >> now, the republican national committee hired a firm to register voters. then what happened? >> well, that's right. strateg strategic allied consulting is the name of the firm run out of arizona and it was paid over $3 million to register republican voters in five battleground
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state. the problem began in palm beach county, of all places, when the election supervisor spotted 106 suspicious forms submitted by one of the firm's employees. these included similar signatures on the forms. in other words, they all looked alike, like one person had signed them. others had links to show them to a gas station and a land rover dealership. she reported this to the state's attorneys office to see who signed them. at the same time, there are at least seven other counties that have reported similarities on forms submitted by employees throughout this one firm. i've confirmed today, this
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florida secretary of state's office has asked for a statewide criminal inquiry into the firm by the florida department of law enforcement. the republican national committee in damage control has fired the firm across the country and the florida republican party has submitted its own complaint against the firm to the secretary of state's office. i have talked to nathan spool. he says he's the victim here. it was bad apples that he hired here to register voters across the country but i think some people are asking questions where there was certain oversight that should have been done by the party in florida and perhaps the rnc as well as to how the firm is conducting the business. >> how possible is it that the gop knew something was going on? >> well, look, there's no evidence of that. we do know that sprool has had a
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somewhat controversial past. he's been accused of election irregularities going back to 2004 when democrats accused him of throwing away voter registration forms. no criminal charges were filed against him but it is interesting that sprool has said that the strategic allied consulting was only formed in june, that it was formed under this different name, a new name, so that democrats and the media would not raise questions tieing it back to him and make issues of the controversies that have surrounded him in the past. so there was a little bit of subtrifuge in the formation of the firm. >> interesting. michael isakoff, thanks for your time tonight. >> thank you. speaking about republican voter fraud in florida, i had jim greer, the florida chair of the former -- the former florida
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chair of the republican party on the show and he told me what this is really all about. watch. >> i sat in on many meetings where it was discussed of how to make sure that what happened in 2008, when president obama brought out the college age voter, the minority voters, never happened again. make sure the republican party has an advantage in this upcoming election by reducing early voting, putting roadblocks up for potential voter, latinos, african-americans to exercise their right to vote. >> let's bring in melissa harris-perry. what do you make of this ironic twist in the voter fraud story? >> i think there's a couple of important points here. one, the things that republicans have been doing in state legislatures across the country to so-call address voter fraud, things like ending early voting,
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limiting the hours of the polls and, of course, the i am poe significance of voter i.d., none of those measures would impact the kind of voter fraud that it looks like we're seeing currently in florida. so whether or not the gop was itself part of what this firm is doing, what we do know is that their so-called remedies, voter suppression efforts, do nothing to address this kind of fraud. and the other thing that i think is really important here is it reminds us how antiquated our election system is, that we are still dealing with paper and pencil. i mean, my students at universities don't even turn in paper that way. we have much more sophisticated ways of registers voters and just how little investment there's been in this country of bringing us into the 21st century. >> isn't it interesting that isakoff says that the group that's been given millions of dollars now -- >> yep. >> only formed in june?
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why would you hire a group that just started and give the millions of dollars to do registration at the same time that you're running around the country dealing with voter fraud and if it hadn't been for groups like ours and others, it wouldn't have become a national issue? >> and especially in florida where what they tried to do was limit the ability of third parties to do voter registration at all where you had decades old -- >> around voter registration? >> around voter registration. they tried to limit these third parties from being able to do that and at the same time that they are bringing in this sort of so-called new kid on the block. isakoff is right, this is someone that's long been there and just changed their name. >> and that's the point. if they didn't have some knowledge of who the person was, you wouldn't give millions of dollars to an outfit a month or two old. >> well, you might.
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>> but the fact of the matter is, while we're seeing all of these state laws changing, the irony is this allegation with this guy in florida. but at the same time we're still fighting these laws that are really inhibiting people when there's no fraud. >> that's right. and people who have every right to vote, who should simply be able to show up and vote, and particularly when you look at pennsylvania and the madness going on there, these are suppress sif efforts. >> thank you, melissa. be sure to watch melissa harr harris-perry right here at 10:00 a.m. on msnbc on saturday and sunday. not any more and he's their guy and they are not hiding it now. plus, you won't believe what a republican volunteer said
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[ man ] it's evil! if you'd try it, you'd know. she speaketh the truth! [ crowd gasps ] [ woman ] reverend? ♪ can i have some? ♪ two years ago the tea party rode into washington thinking they own the place. then came the obstruction, the
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outbursts, the disrespect. well, we're starting to see them crack. take in the gop candidate for the senate, richard murdoch. he bragged about refusing to compromise. >> i certainly think that bipartisanship ought to consist of democrats coming to the republican point of view. >> bipartisanship means they have to come our way. >> but today we're learning he's changing his tune to woo indiana moderates. all of a sudden he says he'll support parts of president obama's health care law, protect social security and medicare and even entertain the idea of compromise. why the sudden change of heart? could it be because he's losing his senate race and we're seeing the tea party stars fighting for their political lives. america's rejecting radicalism. as i always say, do unpopular
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things, become unpopular. with the tea party decline, will the parties be able to get something done in washington after the election is the question. joining me now, karen finney, msnbc political analyst and former communications director of the democratic national committee and e.j. dionne, columnist for "the washington post," and he's writing today about whether this election can fix what is wrong thanks to both of you for being here. what has to happen to get washington working again? >> well, i think -- i'm really glad you're doing this segment. because if president obama does win this election, one of the biggest debates, important to everybody and not just republicans, would be the debate inside the republican party about why they lost.
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and the right wing is going to want to blame romney, say he didn't present them and we have a stake with the tea party and the right. if, however, the republicans start losing some of these seats, losing and walsh and bachmann and allen west, then it's going to be harder for the right end of the party to argue our ideas went untainted and i think if some of these folks actually lose the election, the more moderate conservatives in the party will be able to say, this wasn't just about romney. this was about a set of ideas that put us way outside the mainstream and that's why these races and others like them really matter. >> karen, in light of that, because that is exactly what i'm driving at -- >> yep. >> joe walsh is running against tam knee duck worth in illinois. he's losing the race by 14 points. some of the biggest tea party seats in the house are being challenged. michele bachmann swept into office in 2010 with a 13-point
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lead. now she's only two points ahead of her opponent. allen west, nine-point lead in 2010 has turned into a statistical dead heat in 2012. congressman steve king held an impressive 33% lead in 2010, is now down to single digits. is this a rejection of their ideas and could lead to the country moving away from this extreme right philosophy in terms of a takeover by politics in washington? >> yes, if as president obama said, because he was right when he said that real power is not here in washington, you don't change washington from the inside, it does mean that people from the outside, it's not just about who gets elected. that's very important. and then people outside of washington have to keep the pressure on their members of congress to hold them accountable for what they said they were going to do. when we've seen people do that over the course of the last
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couple of years, that's the only time we've actually ever seen congress act that or coming to a fiscal cliff and over a deadline. you know, rev, i like what you're saying. i think we do not fully do our job back in 2010 and understand the tea party. we easily bought into the narrative and i think there was a whole astro turf movement with dick armey and not fully understanding that you can win with the radical ideas in gerimander districts maybe once but you cannot win statewide and you did not win a presidential election given the changing demographics of the country. you simply cannot. >> e.j., they were beating a drum about the deficit which is important but when you look at the concerns of american, let's look at the top five concerns. one, the economy. two, jobs. three, health care. four, education. five was the budget deficit. so no one's minimizing the
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importance of the deficit but there really is not a program that deals with the other four and they are using extreme measures and cutting up various entitlements and americans that want to deal with the deficit. >> i think what happened in 2010 and democrats in a way allowed this to happen is that the republicans succeeded in making the deficit a central issue and a stand in for people's economic worries across the board. >> right. >> i think now it's much clearer to people that these two things are related but they are quite separate and there are moments when balancing the budget or cutting spending on things like schools and public safety can actually make unemployment worse. i think something else important has happened, which is the health care law was very unpopular on election day back
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then. the health care law is gaining ground. and they were demobilized, the democrats last time. they are not demobilized this time. >> they were strutting around, the tea partyiers in their outfits and rallies. where is the big strut? you couldn't go to warning tshi without seeing them. i haven't seen any of the tea party rallies. what happened? >> the last rally they tried to have was dramatically reduced in size. what happened, again, is we started to hear and see these stories that there were tea party people disappointed with the results that they were getting out of washington and, again, i think that people bought into the rhetoric. shame on democrats. we did not do a great job in 2010. so they strutted in and m
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misinterpreted what the election was about. here's the thing, voters also learned from, thanks to the tea party, you better have the details. talk about the deficit and tell me the details. >> i'm going to have to leave it there. thank you, karen. thank you, e.j. dionne. both of you have a great weekend. thank you for your time. >> you, too. >> we'll be right back. [ female announcer ] research suggests cell health plays a key role
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we're 39 days to the ee electric. more des rate the right wing gets, the more uglier they get. in florida called president obama a muslim and a socialist. in a phone bank call for the romney campaign. >> i don't know if you have done any research on obama or not, but is he a muslim. um, he is, um, got a socialistic view on the, you know, economy, the government, the whole nine
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yards. if he had his way, we would be a socialistic country. >> and earlier this week in virginia, a gop group posted offensive photos of the president on facebook, photoshopped to make him look like a witch doctor or caveman, even one showing the president beg the country, come on baby, give me one more chance. but there's also real big money behind some of this ugliness. the daily beast reports voters in three key states from day one has been a neverending onslaught of ugly attacks but this garbageness shows their weakness. they can't go on the substance so they go ugly. it's not bertha time it's primetime. two men go under the lights for
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the first debate and as we head to the home stretch, the other side will keep this ugliness going. so what are you doing to combat this ugliness? watch the debate for substance, for programs, for who stands up for the right america and then vote based on substance. vote based on the future of this country. vote based on what you know will improve this nation. vote. thanks for watching. i'm al sharpton. "hardball" starts right now. romney versus ryan, the divorce. let's play "hardball." ♪ good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let me start with mr. romney's divorce. why did he pick paul ryan for


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